2018 MBP 13 vs 15

So for the first time ever, my job will be providing me with a Mac. We will experiment with an iMac in the office but the company is issuing me a MBP.

The question is whether I want to be practical or not about my decision. My sense is the MBP will be my Home machine to do work or while I’m traveling. I know all the standard pros/cons between 13 and 15 inch MBPs mainly portability vs power. I will travel occasionally but very far from a road warrior. It’s gotta be the 15 right? Are there arguements against the 15?

To be clear, we are looking at i7, 16gb ram, 256 ssd. Actually I’m a little weary of the 256 and may ask for a 512 since I have a ton of apps. For docs, I he company uses box and for my personal stuff I can use iCloud, Dropbox, or a thumb drive.

Any advice appreciated!

Keep in mind that the 2018 13” is now quad core, equivalent to the 15” in previous generations.

Aside from a slightly bigger screen the main advantages of the 15” are 6 cores (2 more than the 13”), a discrete GPU (integrated graphics only on the 13”), up to 32gb of RAM (max 16gb on the 13”), up to 4tb SSD (max 2tb on the 13”). Since you aren’t maxing out the SSD or RAM, the main thing you’re getting are the extra cores and the discrete GPU. So, would your workloads take advantage of the extra cores and better GPU?


I went with a 13” MBP and iPad running Duet over the 15” - more portable and versatile - I’ll take two monitors over 2” more in the diagonal any day.

Definitely get 512 GB.


In day to day work, it is doubtful that I would require the extra cores.

The extra screen space of a 15" is a welcome treat and far superior at accommodating split screen applications. Also, its better for connecting to an external monitor and using as a second display.

The portability aspect of the 13", to me, is not that important. I’d rather not suffer with a smaller screen for a 7+ hour work day just because for a little time during each day I need to walk with it (the 15"). These things are so light that most adults should be able to carry then without issue. If you can carry a 13", you could most likely carry a 15".

I bought a Macbook Pro 13" 2015 (high spec) a month or so ago and wished I had gone with the 15". Practicality, for me, is more important than convenience (and coolness).


I am debating the same choice myself.
Need a portable machine while visiting clients. 13" inch is much easier to travel with and handle while on site. But if I need to do a remote support session it really helps to have the larger screen!

Then there is cost, the 15" is significantly more expensive then the 13" adding to that is the fact that APP is $110 more for the 15" over the 13"…

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For me, there are only a few key differences between the macbook pro 13 and 15:

  • Will your work benefit significantly from the larger screen?
  • Will your work benefit significantly from a discrete GPU?
  • Will 32GB of RAM make a significant difference to your work over 16GB?
  • Will your work benefit significantly from 6 cores vs 4 cores?

If the answer to any of the questions is yes, then you should consider the 15-inch machine. If the answer to all of them is no, then you should be fine with the 13-inch machine. In my opinion, weight is not really a concern anymore since the 2018 15-inch MBP is only slightly heavier than the 2015 13-inch MBP.

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Thanks everyone. I’ve decided to go with the 15 not only for the larger screen but also for potentially a longer upgrade cycle. I did ask for an increase to 512gb ssd. I haven’t heard back if that’s a go.

Rather then upgrading, It ususally works out better if you choose the model that has this size drive in its stock configuration.

Is that because of better quality build?

No financially and easer to obtain. If the machine ever would have to be replaced by Apple its much easier to swap a stock configuration rather then a custom one…

By your advice, I successfully got the stock MBP that has 512gb hard drive in space grey. It’s a beautiful machine!!


Meantime I also bought the 15" MB Pro in stock configuration.
It’s my travel Mac when I visit my clients and are out of the office for a week or longer. The 15" Retina screen offers enough space and resolution to do remote support without getting en eyestrain headage :slight_smile:

My main office setup is a 27" retina iMac with 27" Dell Ultrasharp as a 2nd display. Strangely I find working on the laptop much more satisfying…


What do you use to travel with it. I’m searching for a case/sleeve right now.



Hey, can anyone share their experience and knowledge in terms of moving from 15 to 13”? My 15” 2013 MBP needs replacing, and I’m a bit sick of the weight of it. Lately the iPad Pro takes so much of the workload, so I now try not to carry 2kg of MBP about much (am freelance comms consultant working from home and people call me teeny, so that 15” is a big lug). I produce/view but don’t edit video (but might more in future). I shoot and edit stills, but again not huge RAW files and not all day every day. I work with graphics a fair bit, but again am not the main artist/producer of same. There is 350Gb of 1Tb left on this hard drive and I have a lot of stuff parked off on hard-drives/clouds. Anyone’s perspective on processing/specs will be appreciated here, as well also as thoughts on the brain fade of moving from 15 down to 13 as a daily workspace. Do-able? I’m figuring that maybe as iPad Pro has become basically second screen, and I work side-by-side across them both in real-time, the slightly smaller MBP screen real estate wouldn’t be missed. It’s a lot cheaper - am I missing out on anything else by downgrading? Is this an ok time to buy MBP 13?? Looking forward to your advice, wise friends…

You are going to an integrated GPU. How GPU dependent are your workloads?

Not so much, I don’t think. No gaming, and not so much direct graphic or vid work done here. Zero gaming. ??